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William Howard & The Carducci String Quartet - Schubert & Dvořák

Enjoy the intimacy and intensity of a recital hall little bigger than a large drawing room.

Listen to pre-concert talks by concert pianist and founder of the Schubert Ensemble, William Howard.

Mingle with the musicians as well as like-minded fellow music lovers.

Stay in The Castle Hotel, an award-winning, family-run hotel in Taunton.

Martin Randall Festival staff are in attendance to help these events run smoothly and enjoyably.

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  • The Carducci String Quartet, © Tom Barnes.
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At the heart of this weekend are three of Schubert’s most distinctive and enduringly popular chamber works: the Trout Quintet, Death and the Maiden Quartet and E flat Piano Trio. Curated by William Howard in collaboration with the superb Carducci String Quartet, the programmes also offer a varied selection of more intimate pieces by Schubert. Each concert includes a work by Dvořák, who, like Schubert, was not only one of the greatest melodists of the 19th century, but also shared an astonishing imagination for instrumental colour, nowhere more evident than in his own Piano Quintet. 

Founded in 1997, the internationally acclaimed Carducci String Quartet has performed in prestigious venues across the globe. Winners of numerous competitions and, in 2016, a Royal Philharmonic Society Award, they maintain a busy schedule of concerts alongside a strong commitment to educational work and run their own annual festival near Gloucester. 


Matthew Denton, Michelle Fleming violin

Eoin Schmidt-Martin viola

Emma Denton cello

William Howard piano

Daniel Storer double bass (Trout Quintet)

Friday 5 November, 5.30pm

Talk at 5.00pm

Schubert, Adagio and Rondo Concertante for Piano Quartet D487

Dvořák, String Quartet No.12 in F, Op.96 American

Schubert, Piano Quintet in A, D667 Die Forelle


Saturday 6 November, 11.00am

Talk at 10.30am

Schubert, String Trio Movement in B flat D471

Dvořák, Three Poetic Tone Pictures for Piano, Op.85 (Nos 1, 9 & 7)

Schubert, Ungarische Melodie D817 (solo piano)

Schubert, 3 Ecossaises D816 (solo piano)

Schubert, String Quartet No.14 in D minor, D810 Death and the Maiden 


Saturday 6 November, 5.30pm

Talk at 5.00pm

Schubert, Notturno in E flat D897 for Piano Trio 

Schubert, String Quartet No.10 in E flat, D87

Dvořák, Piano Quintet No.2 in A, Op.81


Sunday 7 November, 11.00am

Talk at 10.30am

Schubert, Ave Maria (arr. for Cello and Piano)

Schubert, Ständchen (arr. for Piano by F. Liszt)

Schubert, Impromptus in G flat and E flat from Op.90

Dvořák, Three Waltzes Op.54 for Piano (Nos 1, 2, & 5)

Schubert, Piano Trio No.2 in E flat, D929

Prices, per person

Two sharing: £860; Garden or Castle Room: £1,050. Single occupancy: double for sole use: £980; single bedded room: £860.


Four concerts and pre-concert talks, accommodation for two nights, breakfasts, two afternoon teas, two dinners, interval drinks, programme, tips for hotel staff.


The Castle Hotel, Taunton, is renowned for its excellent service, for comforts traditional and modern, and for its superb catering. It has been owned and run by the Chapman family for over 60 years. Chamber music events have been held here since 1977, and Martin Randall Travel took over the running of them in 2003. 

The hotel’s bedrooms are individually and charmingly decorated. Doubles and twins are mainly of a good size, and the largest – the Garden Rooms – overlook the garden. There is no single-occupancy supplement for the rooms with single beds. The majority of rooms have a bath with a shower fitment.

The hotel has a lift, though some bedrooms are then accessed via stairs. The Music Room is on a mezzanine level, up a flight of stairs from the lobby.

Taunton lies on the doorstep of Exmoor and the Quantocks, areas with some of the loveliest countryside in England.


Map for Taunton.